By Jeremy McDonald
TURNER, Ore.– Siuslaw showed some power and strength in their playing ability in their first two sets with Cascade High School despite the Lady Cougars winning both sets 25-21, 25-22 entering the third set.
Cascade, playing in an unusual spot in the play-in round instead of the first round as recent memory saw them starting their playoff push, had high momentum as they walked out to the court for that third and final set.
“That we needed to put 100-percent into this game, all out,” said Alejandra Osuna-Sola. “We need to lay-out for every single ball. We really need to get our head into the game and focus, just go for it and not be too timid and be aggressive and play our game on our court.
However, though they had an idea that the Lady Vikings will have one more fight in them in trying to extend the match, the Cougs were not expecting a hard hitting server with Siuslaw leading 5-0 right off the bat.
“I could see the other team wanted it, they have that fury so that particular server, they served it harder than she usually does,” said Osuna-Sola on the start of the third set as the senior finished with nine kills and eight digs. “And so we weren’t expecting that because once we got a hang of it, we got the motion. We took care of it.”
Slowly, as they got used to what they were seeing, Cascade slowly to chip away at the deficit, eventually tying it at 8 after a service ace by Skylar Perlichek and both sides traded points before taking a 18-14 lead with Jolinn ‘JoJo’ Daviscourt serving.
“We’ve had our struggles throughout the season, so it’s just like that, you have to overcome when your down and you have to take every opportunity,” said Kaelyn Worst, who added another eight kills for Cascade. “So when we got the ball back, we just have to keep pushing and keep going for our goals.”
Siuslaw cut it down to two, but couldn’t get any closer as Erica Mitchell puts the Lady Cougars up 23-20 before setting up a Osuna-Sola kill to make it 24-20 with the seniors like Mitchell, Osuna-Sola and Worst finally got that last ‘W’ on home-court that they were denied of on October 10 against Philomath.
“It was so nice to end with a win on our own court, I’m super excited to go to the playoffs,” said Worst. “I feel like we’re becoming more consistent so it’s really nice to meet that consistency again because it really kicked us up at the beginning of the season, then we had some ups-and-downs and now I feel like we’re starting to peak again and being consistent.”
“It felt really great getting back into it after the week we had last week and oh my gosh it makes me feel like we’re a team again honestly,” adds Mitchell. “Just keep playing as a team at practice and going all-out on practice and really bonding like we have been these last few days.”
In the meantime, it’s just preparing for their first-round game on October 28.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald